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Softball stays in first after taking two of three from Maine

Junior Jane Sallen, No. 25 above, allowed three hits in each of her starts against Maine. EFAL SAYED / THE STATESMAN
Junior Jane Sallen (above, No. 25) allowed three hits in each of her starts against Maine. EFAL SAYED / THE STATESMAN

The Stony Brook softball team entered the weekend with a crucial three-game series against the Maine Black Bears, splitting the doubleheader on Saturday before taking Sunday’s grudge match.

The Seawolves started out their doubleheader with a 4-2 loss to end their six-game win streak. Stony Brook’s Jane Sallen and Maine’s Alexis Bogdanovich both pitched complete games, allowing only three hits each.

The Black Bears scored two of their four runs in the bottom of the first inning, when EmJ Fogel hit a triple, scoring Felicia Lennon and Rachel Carlson. Through the first inning, Sallen had given up two runs on one hit.

The top of the second went quickly as Stony Brook failed to get a hit.

Maine continued in its stride as the Black Bears plated two without registering a hit in the second inning. With two outs, Lexie Shue made a fielding error at shortstop, allowing two runs to score and giving the Black Bears a 4-0 lead.

Stony Brook answered with two runs in the top of the fourth to cut the deficit in half. With one out and the bases empty, Bria Green came to the plate, and she did what she does best: hit home runs. She smacked her 16th homer of the season to left field, two more than the entire Maine roster combined.

Up next was Shayla Giosia, and she brought some jolt of her own to the offense, hitting her ninth home run of the year. The back-to-back blasts were not enough to get the Seawolves going, as Maine retired 11 of the next 12 batters.

Sallen was given the loss, dropping her record to 12-8. Through six innings of work, she walked two batters and struck out two. Bogdanovich also had an impressive outing. She did not walk a single batter and had 12 strikeouts.

Allison Cukrov picked up her seventh win and fourth shutout of the year when Stony Brook won the second game of the doubleheader, 4-0. She only gave up three hits while fanning six Black Bears.

The Seawolves got their first lead of the series in the top of the first inning, when Giosia hit an RBI single, driving Chelsea Evans home. The offense would stay quiet until the sixth when it came to life.

With Erin Bogdanovich pitching and Kellie Reynolds on first, Melissa Phelan slapped a single to center field. With two outs, Shue came to the plate and blasted a three-run home run to left field, her fifth, to give SBU a 4-0 lead. Cukrov was able to retire the next six batters in order to secure the win.

In addition to the powerful hitting and dominant pitching, the Seawolves were defensively flawless in game two. After committing two errors in the series opener, the fielding improved and did not make a single error. Stony Brook has had the second-fewest errors in the America East this season with 27, just two behind Maine.

The Seawolves made a very late comeback in the rubber match of the series to win 2-1. Cukrov pitched 7.1 innings without allowing a run and was able to close out the win.

The Black Bears took their only lead of the game in the bottom of the second, when Nikki Byron singled to right, scoring Fogel.

Stony Brook’s offense was shut down for most of the game. The Seawolves did have a few opportunities to score early, but they could not capitalize.

The Seawolves finally got on the board in the top of the sixth inning, when Lauren Kamachi hit a two-out solo home run, tying the game.

The Seawolves took the lead in the ninth, with two outs. Evans hit a single to center field, her only hit of the ball game.

Green came up next, and she was able to hit a double to send Evans home, giving SBU a 2-1 lead.

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